Sunday, December 05, 2010

Christmas Cookies #1: White Chocolate Raspberry Thumbprints

Today was a day of baking. I made three different kinds of cookies and twelve loaves of chocolate banana bread (Tyler Florence's recipe).

These cookies in the picture are my White Chocolate Raspberry Thumbprints. Readers will remember them as the featured recipe in Twelve Days, my novella in Sugar and Spice. I liked them so much, I've made them every year. :-)

They're delicious...just a light sugar cookie base, with raspberry jam filling and then white chocolate drizzle and red sugar sprinkles. A couple things I sometimes do (that aren't in my recipe)....add a teaspoon of vegetable oil to the white chocolate when it's melting to make it more pliable, and keep it from hardening too fast. I also sometimes roll the sugar cookie dough balls in sugar before flattening them and filling them. What's a little extra sweetness at the holidays? ;-)
Shirley's White Chocolate Raspberry Thumbprints

1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/2 teaspoon vanilla (I always use real vanilla)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1/3 cup seedless raspberry jam
1 cup white chocolate chips
Red sugar sprinkles

Trust me, these ones are so good, you won’t have any left for guests (and whoever invented that rule about sharing your cookies, anyhow? It’s Christmas, indulge yourself a little). In a large mixing bowl, beat the butter and the shortening with an electric mixer (or use a stand mixer and let the machine do the work), then add the sugar, powdered sugar, baking soda, cream of tarter, and the salt. Beat just until combined.

Add the egg and vanilla, then mix in the flour gradually. Cover the dough and refrigerate for three hours. I know, it’s a long wait, but it’ll be worth it later. Heat the oven to 375 degrees. Roll the dough into 3/4-inch balls and put them on an ungreased cookie sheet. With your thumb or the end of a wooden spoon, press a circular indentation into the center of each cookie. Drop a 1/4 teaspoon of jam into each thumbprint. Bake cookies for 8-10 minutes, then cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, pour yourself a glass of milk and get into serious cookie-eating mode. Skip lunch if you have to-there’s no way a tuna on rye can compete.

Put the white chocolate chips in a microwave-safe bowl and microwave on high in 30-second bursts, stirring each time, until the chips are melted. Pour the white chocolate into a resealable plastic bag and snip off a tiny bit of one corner. Drizzle the white chocolate over the cookies. Sprinkle cookies with red sugar to add that festive flair.

Now you’re ready to indulge-don’t worry about the calories until January 1st. Makes three dozen, just enough for you and a friend!



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